10 Sling Bags For Every Occasion | Should You Travel With One?

love them or hate them sling bags have become very popular within the last couple years and they are more than just a fashion accessory they're also a great way to carry around your everyday items without hauling around a larger backpack I'm Tom the founder of pack hacker your guide to smarter travel if you're new here consider subscribing and hitting that Bell icon so you get notifications whenever we publish a new video we've looked at 60 plus slings when making our in-depth sling guide in this video we're gonna be taking a look at ten that have stuck out to us and that also work for a variety of personal styles we'll leave links to the big sling guide over on Packer com below as well as every single sling that we review in this video so make sure to check that out if you want to get more detail on any sling in particular let's dive in [Music] as long as you don't mind the look of slings they make a really great everyday companion toss all of your pocketable items into your sling and have access to everything that you'd like for the day without you need to bring a larger bulky backpack we like to call this pockets plus a sling is also great for one bag travelers that want to bring along a small personal item on a flight especially for those stingy budget airlines plus you can throw that sling into a bin and just breeze through airport security if everything is already out of your pockets there isn't one sling bag that will work for everyone so it's important that you consider your use case let's dive in and check out ten example slings that really stuck out to us right now it's hard to talk about slings without mentioning air and the air day sling too is built for the urban adventurer we dig it's sleek streamlined aesthetic that looks great in cities across the world and the 1680 D Cordura ballistic nylon paired with the beefy YKK zippers are so durable they're bordering on overkill plus the bag has some solid weather resistance so far this thing has kept up for whatever adventures we've thrown at it in our detailed testing based on our testing the most comfortable way to wear this sling is crossbody along the wearer's back swinging it around to your front when you need to get anything out but if you're wearing a backpack – it is easy enough to swing this around to the front and use it as a dual carry option as well that's because the buckle is positioned off-center and next to the body of the bag this is a huge plus when compared to slings with centered buckles that will dig into your back if you're wearing them at your front as well as a backpack on your back plus it's easy to access the buckle which means that you can unbuckle the sling without taking your backpack off first inside there's plenty of space and organization to easily fit all of your essentials and then some the main compartment is large enough to fit a Nintendo switch or an iPad Mini you'll even find a secret compartment for those items you want to keep extra secure like your wallet or your passport all in all the air day sling – makes a solid travel companion which is why it's one of the highest-rated slings over on our website if you want your sling to work in a variety of situations then the Mokka to buy Arc'teryx is an excellent choice it's one of the most versatile sling bags we've come across to date you can wear it as a sling bag waist pack crossbody bag or shoulder bag we're partial to the sling carry as we found it the most comfortable in our testing but all these carry modes work well we appreciate that the back panel features spacer mesh which is comfortable breathable mesh that feels nice on the body the Mokka twos simplistic minimal aesthetic doesn't call too much attention to itself either there's not a ton going on in the external of this pack and it looks fairly simple plus its small size and square shape means this thing doesn't overwhelm smaller frames we also dig the internal organization it has three pockets a smartphone pocket a quick grab pocket and the main compartment and the main compartment holds a lot more than you might expect we've even managed to fit a spare t-shirt inside overall we found this sling to be a great size and shape to carry everyday essentials although will struggle with larger and longer items like a water bottle and if you don't have that much stuff to carry you can take a look at the Mokka one which is essentially the smaller version of the Arc'teryx Macha to the chrome industries MXD notch sling bag is for the tidy traveler who likes to have a spot for everything this bag has way more organization than you typically see on slings it features several pockets of varying sizes and softness so you'll find a spot for everything a Nintendo switch a passport travel sunglasses a battery bank wallet snacks you name it at nearly a foot wide this sling bag is also wide giving you plenty of space to work with it's probably a little bit too large if you're only looking for a place to empty your pockets though it can also overwhelm smaller frames particularly when worn as a hip pack but if you want to rock this thing as a fanny pack all the more power to you the materials are no joke the exterior is made from a 16 80 d ballistic nylon and love it or hate it the iconic metal chrome buckle is also here and it's built to last be careful of overloading this thing though it can start to look a little bit bulky ruining the bags over all urban aesthetic and more importantly it gets heavy this thing clocks in at nearly 1 pound and when we fill it to the brim with all of our gear it can weigh approximately 4 pounds which is definitely on the heavier side of comfortable but if you want to carry a decent amount more than you can fit in your pockets and you want to keep everything completely organized in a robust and durable sling that trade-off may be worth it for you if you're excited about sling bags but not a hundred bucks excited take a look at the cabin 0 2 liter hip pack this sling doesn't have a ton of innovative features but it gets the job done at a low price point the backing has a comfortable spongy mesh to keep the sweat to a minimum and ensure overall comfort and the buckle is off-center so just like the air day sling – it can be comfortable to wear with a backpack as well the interior organization is perfect for everything in your pockets plus a few additional essentials we like that it has a zippered RFID safe security pocket it's a great spot to keep a passport credit cards extra cash or other items that you would like to keep secure the downside is that this sling is made of polyester which isn't necessarily known for its durability it likely won't last as long as something like the chrome MXD notch but remember it is a fraction of the cost plus it's a sling bag which means that it likely won't have as much wear and tear as a travel backpack it's also one of the most well liked sling bags looks-wise according to our Instagram audience when we conducted our Instagram aesthetic poll 60% of people said they liked the look of this sling that high of an approval is almost unheard of compared to other slings that we've pulled and during testing we found that this thin narrow design looks great on basically every body type which is a huge plus I've personally taken the tum bin side effect on four flights and I can say with confidence that is one of the best bags for the frequent flyer it's compact and still holds everything you need for a comfortable flight there are two compartments a main zippered compartment and a quick wrap pocket at the front the main compartment is basically one giant bucket with four a rings and two divider pockets you can trick out this sling with whatever organization works for you especially if you're pairing it with smaller Tom bin pouches as well and you have a ton of room to work with we've thrown in a buff wallet headphones and a phone but you can use it to hold whatever you need for a comfortable flight Plus this sling can easily convert into an accessory pouch if you don't want to use it in sling mode use it as an organizer in your travel bag then pull it out for day trips whenever you get to your destination you can even use it with the Tom bin key strap to tether it to the interior of a Tom bin backpack but it wouldn't be a Tom bin product if you didn't have even more carry options to choose from you can also pick up the optional waist strap and rocket fanny pack style or by the optional handle loop and hang this pouch off of your wrist of course the materials are also top-notch at the time of this video there are three choices for the exterior fabric we have 400 d Halcyon and then we have 1050 denier and 525 denier high tenacity ballistic nylon and you can't go wrong with any of these fabric choices Tom bin has really become a trusted brand for us when it comes to durability as long as you can dig the crossbody and per style of this sling it may be an excellent option for your next trip [Music] the Herschel form crossbody bag totally has that murse and purses that it going on plus it kind of looks like a mini backpack for teddy bears the polyester exterior likely won't last quite as long as other more durable fabrics and there's not a ton of weather resistance so basically this sling is ideal if you are not rough on your gear but it's a great size in the compact form fits a little bit better than you'd think just looking at a photo of it it's three cube-shaped compartments hold a variety of gear and that 3d shape means your stuff stays in place really well this is definitely a plus unless you like it when all of your things end up in a jumbled pile inside of a sling we also appreciate Herschel's signature bright red striped fabric liner which helps you see what's going on inside of the compartments our biggest complaint about this sling is these shoulder straps we like that the part of the strap that comes in contact with your body is made from a thick soft material ensuring comfort and reducing the likelihood of damaging your clothing but the bag can be quite loose and hits at the hips this isn't ideal for crowded markets or buses when it's safer to have the bag higher and tight against your body the strap is also removable but it will leave behind two dangling straps you can tuck them into the storage sleeve although you'll be able to see the imprint of the buckles inside of the sleeve but if those aren't deal-breakers for you and you're digging this slings casual vibe it could be a solid pick [Music] if you like to be prepared and secure then pacsafe is the brand for you the pacsafe venture safe x anti-theft sling pack is not only a mouthful but it's also tricked out with a ton of security features these features include an RFID safe pocket to help protect against theft lockable zippers to keep things secure a slash resistant strap and mesh panel to make the material more robust and a security clip that allows you to lock it to a fixed object like a subway pole or a park bench security features aside the anti-theft sling pack is just a solid sling it's made with nylon diamond rip stop with a polyurethane coating which adds water resistance and abrasion resistance while keeping this pack lightweight we like that this slings simple streamlined aesthetic doesn't scream security especially with the black version that we've been testing and at 6 liters it will hold everything you need for comfortable transatlantic flights or for a day out exploring we also like that you can wear this sling on your left or right hand shoulder carrying all the weight of a sling bag on one shoulder gets tiring and it's super nice to be able to switch it up this is also a helpful feature if you're a lefty since you're usually ignored by sling bag manufacturers similar to the M XD at notch sling we mentioned earlier this thing is heavy coming in at about 1 pound when it's empty this isn't a deal-breaker but something to keep in mind if you're trying to decide if those extra security features are worth it typical to Patagonia the atom sling has been designed to shine in the great outdoors you'll find soft padded and breathable mesh on both the back panel and shoulder strap you're still likely to get a little bit sweaty while you're on the trail but it has a lot more breathability than other slings out there we only wish that you could switch the carry between both of your shoulders right now it still gets uncomfortable to carry after long periods of time or if it's fully packed out at 8 liters it is also larger than most of the other sling bags we've mentioned so far in this video it's a great size to hold everything you'll need for a successful trip into the great outdoors plus the main compartment has a padded sleeve against the back which is a great spot for tablets or readers finally it has an external accessory loop and compression straps so you can carry more gear externally during testing we have held a packable rain jacket within those two compression straps so it's had a chance to air dry after it's been used of course the atom sling has also been made with durability in mind it's made from recycled nylon and finished with a polyurethane and DWR coating for water and abrasion resistance all in all the patagonia atom sling is a great choice if you're an outdoor adventurer Peak design puts a big focus on traveling with camera gear which is why the everyday 3 liter sling is a great option for photographers and videographers this sling offers great protection for a fragile gear any sleek package plus it's water resistant a great feature on a sling that's built to hold expensive camera gear we found the capacity to be nearly perfect for a small setup of one mirrorless camera and two small lenses the front pocket is a good spot for accessories like an ND filter extra cords batteries and other things of that nature you could also put your phone wallet and keys here if you're using this sling as an EDC bag as well the main compartment is highly customizable which means that you can put it together whichever way works for you you can use the included flex fold divider as a divider or origami it into two of various shapes to support your cameras lenses and accessories and the last straps allow you to carry a travel tripod or other gear externally we're big fans of these swivel strap which makes it really easy to access things quickly it also moves with your body adding to the bags overall comfort the quick release adjuster is also a game changer you can easily adjust the strap with one hand tightening it to fit your body or loosening it for an even easier time slinging it forward to access your gear the back panel doesn't have anything special going on but it still works really well and it's comfortable that being said the more you pack the bag out the rounder it gets which means it's not going to fully lay flat against your chest or back if you like the look and the functionality of the three liters sling but need a a little bit more space there's also a six liter and 10 liter option to choose from if you want to see more content on these slings make sure to check out the video on our other channel that compares all three sizes over on pack heck or quick hits we also have content over on the website of every single size if you like to travel ultra light than the hyper light Mountain gear versa should be on your radar it weighs only 2.9 ounces to put that into perspective this sling weighs less than half of a medium-sized Apple it's made with 50 denier polyester that's been laminated with Dyneema composite fabric backings meaning it's incredibly tough durable water resistant and lightweight but it's also crinkly which has the team at pack hacker split some of us think this sling has too much of a plastic bag vibe while others on the team don't mind it at all when you consider all the other benefits we just mentioned it starts to become a solid pick especially if you're trying to go as light as possible everyone on the team likes the shape and size it's not oversized so it sits nicely on the hips or across the chest or back at the time of this video it is only available in one colorway a grayish black and we're digging it we're also fans of the blue accent color on the zipper poles as they're easy to spot there's plenty of space inside of the main compartment for those everyday essentials but there's not a ton going on as far as organization is concerned by not much going on we mean there one mesh divider pocket inside of the main compartment and that's it if you like to have a little spot for everything then this sling is definitely not for you the Versa has also been designed to work as a hip pack or accessory bag and it can be attached to Hyperlight mound gears other bags so there you have it we have walked you through ten sling bags for various styles of travel and everyday use whether you're an urban adventurer a tidy traveler or frequent flyer hopefully you found a sling bag that works well for you and if you didn't make sure to head over to our website and check out all the slings we've ever had our hands on as well as that big sling guide that will help you further narrow your search we'll leave a link to those in the description below and as always we would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below thanks for keeping you here at pack hacker your guide to smarter travel we'll see in the next video

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